2018 Pro Swim Series – Columbus: Day 3 Prelims Live Recap


The third of four days is set to get underway from the McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion at the 6th and final stop of the TYR Pro Swim Series circuit in Columbus, Ohio. This preliminary session will feature heats in the women’s and men’s 400 IM, 50 free, 200 back and 200 free. There will also be ‘B’ flight heats in the afternoon in all but the 50 free.

Among the highlights this morning will be reigning world champion Chase Kalisz swimming the men’s 400 IM, as he looks for the Pro Swim sweep after winning the event at the first five stops. We’ll also see Michael Andrew, who won the 100 fly in a best time last night, in the men’s 50 free, 400 free winner Leah Smith in the women’s 400 IM and 200 free, and 100 and 400 free winners on the men’s side Blake Pieroni and Zane Grothe will clash in the 200 metre distance.

Women’s 400 IM Prelims

  • PSS Record: 4:31.07, Katinka Hosszu (HUN), 2015
  1. Leah Smith, Tucson Ford, 4:40.44
  2. Evie Pfeifer, Longhorn Aquatics, 4:43.13
  3. Vien Nguyen, Unattached, 4:44.23
  4. Ally McHugh, Unattached, 4:44.50
  5. Mariah Denigan, Northern KY Clippers, 4:44.93
  6. Asia Seidt, Kentucky Aquatics, 4:48.34
  7. Lauren Edelman, Kentucky Aquatics, 4:48.38
  8. Lilly King, Indiana Swim Team, 4:48.65

Leah Smith of Tucson Ford Dealers Aquatics easily claimed the top seed in the women’s 400 IM with a time of 4:40.44, checking in with her 2nd fastest swim of the season and fastest done in a preliminary. Her season-best 4:39.37 ranks her 5th among Americans this year.

Evie Pfeifer of Longhorn Aquatics was 2nd to Smith in the final heat, and qualifies 2nd overall for the final with a new personal best of 4:43.13, knocking off two seconds from her previous best set in May (4:45.15).

Vien Nguyen won the penultimate heat in a close battle with Ally McHugh and Mariah Denigan, as they advance in 3rd, 4th and 5th. Also of note, both Denigan and Lilly King swam personal best times, with King also advancing to the final in 8th.

Men’s 400 IM Prelims

  1. Hiromasa Fujimori, Phoenix Swim Club, 4:23.36
  2. Anton Ipsen, Wolfpack Elite, 4:24.33
  3. Chase Kalisz, Athens Bulldogs, 4:24.95
  4. Jake Foster, Mason Manta Rays, 4:25.33
  5. Charlie Swanson, Club Wolverine, 4:25.55
  6. Takeharu Fujimori, Phoenix Swim Club, 4:26.16
  7. Will Roberts, Club Wolverine, 4:26.80
  8. Casey Storch, Machine Aquatics, 4:26.95

Hiromasa Fujimori of the Phoenix Swim Club tops the men’s 400 IM prelims in 4:23.36, edging out Wolfpack Elite’s Anton Ipsen and teammate Takeharu Fujimori in the fourth of five ‘A’ flight heats. Hiromasa was just a second off his season-best and should be able to get under it tonight.

Chase Kalisz, undefeated for the series in both IMs, did just enough to touch 1st in the last heat, qualifying 3rd overall in 4:24.95. He currently sits atop the world rankings with his 4:08.92 from the Atlanta stop in March.

Will Roberts of Club Wolverine registered a new personal best for the 7th seed in 4:26.80, as did Ohio State’s Daniel Gloude who won one of the early heats in 4:27.18. He ended up 9th and will contest the B-final tonight.

Women’s 50 Free Prelims

  • PSS Record: 24.17, Sarah Sjostrom (SWE), 2016
  1. Margo Geer, Indiana Post-Grad, 24.91
  2. Kelsi Dahlia, Cardinal Aquatics, 25.42
  3. Catie Deloof, Club Wolverine, 25.51
  4. Siobhan Haughey, Club Wolverine / Mallory Comerford, University of Louisville, 25.61
  5. Casey Fanz, University of Louisville, 25.89
  6. Amanda Kendall, Indiana Post-Grad, 26.08
  7. Lainey Visscher, University of Louisville / Katherine Douglass, Chelsea Piers, 26.09

Margo Geer continued her impressive string of sub-25 second swims this year in the women’s 50 free, as she was the only one under the barrier this morning in 24.91. That’s her tenth sub-25 this year, after only doing so once in her career previously. She’s currently the 2nd fastest American this year with her PB of 24.72.

Kelsi Dahlia won the 2nd-to-last heat for the #2 seed in 25.42, just ahead of Catie Deloof who swam a personal best in 25.51. Siobhan Haughey and Mallory Comerford tied for the win in heat 17 and head into the final dead-locked in 4th, while Lainey Visscher and Katherine Douglass tied for 8th and will require a swim-off to see who swims in the A-final tonight.

UPDATE: Douglass put up a season-best of 25.66 to win the swim-off and advance to the A-final, with Visscher also improving her prelim swim by a wide margin in 25.81.

Men’s 50 Free Prelims

  1. Michael Andrew, Race Pace Club, 21.69
  2. Justin Ress, Wolfpack Elite, 22.64
  3. Zach Apple, Indiana, 22.81
  4. Ryan Held, Wolfpack Elite, 22.82
  5. Mihalis Deliyiannis, Unattached/Ace, 22.95
  6. Bruno Blaskovic, Indiana Swim Team, 23.09
  7. Andrew Loy, Ohio State Swim Club, 23.15
  8. Josh Fleagle, Unattached, 23.16

After a personal best last night in the men’s 100 fly, Michael Andrew carried the momentum into this morning with a massive performance of 21.69 in the 50 free, dropping his lifetime best by .04. After going 21.73 at the Atlantic Classic, a time that had him ranked 7th in the world and tops among Americans, the 19-year-old now jumps up into 5th. He’s within reach of Nathan Adrian‘s PSS record of 21.56, set back in 2015, and also moves into sole position of 7th on the all-time American performers list, breaking free from Nick Brunelli and Bryan Lundquist, with whom he was previously tied at 7th with in 21.73.

Wolfpack Elite’s Justin Ress and Ryan Held won the other two circle-seeded heats, but are well back of Andrew. Ress qualifies 2nd, almost a full second behind in 22.64, with Held 4th in 22.82. Zach Apple also dropped his season-best by a few one-hundredths to advance in 3rd, and Mihalis Deliyiannis cracked 23 seconds for the first time to qualify in 5th.

Women’s 200 Back Prelims

  • PSS Record: 2:06.36, Taylor Ruck (CAN), 2018
  1. Ali Galyer, Kentucky Aquatics, 2:10.77
  2. Bridgette Alexander, Kentucky Aquatics, 2:11.52
  3. Asia Seidt, Kentucky Aquatcis, 2:12.16
  4. Erin Earley, Cavalier Swimming, 2:13.07
  5. Emma Seiberlich, Phoenixville, 2:14.58
  6. Alina Kendzior, University of Louisville, 2:14.59
  7. Kristen Romano, Ohio State Swim Club, 2:15.28
  8. Emi Moronuki, Phoenix Swim Club, 2:15.97

The Kentucky trio of Ali GalyerBridgette Alexander and Asia Seidt put on a clinic in the women’s 200 back prelims, winning all three circle-seeded heats. Galyer leads the way, as she put up a new PB of 2:10.77 to get a full second under her 2:11.77 from the 2017 World Trials. For the season, she jumps up from 15th in the country, where she was ranked with her 2:12.45 from the Indianapolis stop, into 8th.

Alexander had her fastest swim ever at an in-season meet for 2nd in 2:11.52, improving her 2018 best by almost three seconds to move into 11th in the country, and Seidt cruised to the 3rd seed in 2:12.16. 6th seed Alina Kendzior from the University of Louisville registered a best time in 2:14.59.

Men’s 200 Back Prelims

  • PSS Record: 1:55.04, Xu Jiayu (CHN), 2017
  1. Ryosuke Irie, Team Elite, 1:59.48
  2. Carson Foster, Mason Manta Rays, 2:00.34
  3. Zachary Poti, Arizona State University, 2:00.68
  4. Jacob Steele, Indiana Swim Team, 2:00.98
  5. Grigory Tarasevich, Cardinal Aquatics, 2:01.87
  6. Rob Zofchak, Club Wolverine, 2:01.92
  7. Nikita Tretyakov, Swim Fort Lauderdale, 2:02.22
  8. Harrison Lierz, Front Range Barracudas, 2:02.39

Team Elite’s Ryosuke Irie was the only man sub-2:00 in the 200 back prelims, clocking in at 1:59.48 for the top seed. Irie is the 7th fastest man in the world this year with his 1:55.92 from April.

Carson Foster dropped his season-best of 2:00.60 by a few tenths for the #2 seed in 2:00.34, tying him with Ryan Lochte for 8th among Americans this year in the event. Zachary Poti of ASU dropped a lifetime best for 3rd, knocking off his 2:00.96 from the 2017 Florida Senior Championships in 2:00.68.

4th seed Jacob Steele of Indiana also swam a personal best, dropping nearly three seconds from his 2:03.76 down to 2:00.98.

Women’s 200 Free Prelims

  • PSS Record: 1:54.43, Katie Ledecky (USA), 2016
  1. Leah Smith, Tucson Ford, 1:57.64
  2. Allison Schmitt, Unattached/ASU, 1:58.59
  3. Gabby Deloof, Club Wolverine, 1:58.75
  4. Catie Deloof, Club Wolverine, 1:59.95
  5. Kaersten Meitz, Boilermaker Aquatics, 2:00.11
  6. Siobhan Haughey, Club Wolverine, 2:00.24
  7. Cierra Runge, Arizona State, 2:00.54
  8. Geena Freriks, Kentucky Aquatics, 2:00.65

After taking the top seed in the 400 IM at the beginning of the session, Leah Smith had another impressive showing in taking the #1 spot in the women’s 200 free with a time of 1:57.64. That’s her fastest of the season, topping her 1:58.20 from Santa Clara, and moves her from 4th to 2nd among Americans in the event for the year.

2012 Olympic champion in this event Allison Schmitt had her fastest swim in two years to take the 2nd seed in 1:58.59, dropping her season-best by a full second, and Gabby Deloof also swam her fastest of the season for 3rd in 1:58.75. Her sister Catie Deloof broke 2:00 for the first time in her career to qualify 4th, and Kaersten Meitz swam her fastest ever in-season for 5th in 2:00.11.

Men’s 200 Free Prelims

  • PSS Record: 1:44.82, Sun Yang (CHN), 2016
  1. Blake Pieroni, Indiana Swim Team, 1;49.76
  2. Felix Auboeck, Club Wolverine, 1:49.78
  3. Zach Apple, Indiana, 1:50.08
  4. Zane Grothe, Indiana Post-Grad, 1:50.17
  5. Patrick Callan, Trident Aquatics, 1:50.40
  6. Grant House, Arizona State University, 1:50.89
  7. Sam Steele, University of Louisvill,e 1:51.10
  8. Paul DeLakis, Ohio State Swim Club, 1:51.24

Indiana’s Blake Pieroni got his hand on the wall first in the final heat of the men’s 200 free, and ended up sneaking by Felix Auboeck‘s 1:49.78 from the first circle-seeded heat to claim the top seed in 1:49.76. Pieroni won the 100 last night, and will look to lower his season-best of 1:48.19 tonight.

Auboeck heads into the final 2nd, with two of Pieroni’s training partners in Zach Apple and Zane Grothe sitting 3rd and 4th. Apple’s 1:50.08 drops his previous season-best of 1:50.39 from Santa Clara, while Grothe’s fastest of 2018 sits just .01 shy of Pieroni’s as they’ll certainly have a great battle tonight.

Grant House notably had his fastest swim since 2016 for 6th in 1:50.89, and both Sam Steele and Paul DeLakis threw down new personal bests for 7th and 8th.

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3 years ago


Caeleb Dressel Will Win 9 Gold Medals in Tokyo
3 years ago

MA is definitely going to worlds.

3 years ago

MA killing it. His 21.50 goal within reach. As for nationals, 21.4? Maybe faster, we shall see.

Reply to  Philip
3 years ago

I want to say no way, but MA keeps dropping time, still, a 21.5 is ridiculously fast. His sub-22 consistency is impressive. The big boys are going to have a tough time against MA at Nationals. His 100 fly and breast may get interesting too.

3 years ago

Leah Smith is going to be on the top of TYR Pro Swim Series Leader board after this meet.

3 years ago

Kentucky women backstroke is no joke

3 years ago

In other news, Dressel just swam a 1:52 200 Free in prelims at Southern Zone South Sectionals. Let’s see what he can do at finals.

Reply to  SwimFan01
3 years ago

Oof I read that as 200 im at first and almost died

3 years ago

Wow Schmitty is back. Very cool to see. Should be in position to be a great leader for Team USA

Reply to  Swimcoach
3 years ago

She’s been a great leader from the beginning

Reply to  Swimcoach
3 years ago

So exciting to watch her comeback, 1:58 mid is very solid, I could see her around 1:56 low, maybe even 1:55 at nationals. Whatever the results are at nationals, I’m glad she is back, fantastic role model.

3 years ago

Great to see my favourite US swimmer back where she belongs; In a swimming pool. Hoping for a Schmitty special tonight!

Reply to  Dee
3 years ago

Wonderful long stroke. Promising balanced splits. She will be 1 sec faster for the first half and abound 0.3 sec faster at the last 100. 1:57 low, I hope.

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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